at times life seems overwhelming. the old saying - "so little time, so much to do" seems to be the story of our lives; school, work, kids, shopping, laundry, sickness, and the list goes on. if we look beyond our immediate horizon things may look even grimmer. a world full of troubles: genocide and war, starvation and epidemics, everywhere injustice and oppression. the history of humankind is the history of struggle: political, economic, social, personal. each time we think we have a handle on things, each time we overcome a personal or social barrier to truth and peace, we find ourselves faced with another "issue". our hearts become perplexed. we want answers, and we want them now, though often we are not really ready to hear the truth, and even less to act on it.
more often then not we don't even ask the questions except in terms of our own lives, too busy with our own struggles to look beyond, or if we do often we deal with it by turning a blind eye. after all we can't fix all the problems in our own lives much more the world. this of course is true, but is "tuning out" the answer? often we become "personal isolationist", our concern becomes fixed on "me and mine"; we ask with cain - "am i my brother's keeper?" or we may ask - "where is God in all this need and suffering?"
the two questions are inter-related. if we have accepted Jesus' invitation to new life in God, then the answer to the first question is - yes we are our brother's/sister's keeper. we are called to love, and love is only real when it is expressed in concern and caring, in order words when love is manifested in our actions. we have an ethical responsibility and a Divine mandate to love our neighbors as ourselves. thus "tuning out" is not an option for those of us who live in God.
so we ask "where is God to be found in all this?" if we look we will find that God is not "out there" in some distant heaven, but right here struggling and suffering with us. we are not alone nor do our cries fall on deaf ears (though at times we may feel that they do). even more important, God is not only with us but in us. this is the invitation to new life, to live conscious of our rootedness in God. in our hearts God speaks to us and silently points us in the right direction.
some times it is a consolation for us, an inner healing, a sense of peace. other times God seeks to empower us to act boldly in love. this is why i said both questions are inter-related, because God is with us in the living of our days, and moves within us calling us to action in love. think about these things in context of Jesus' teachings: "you and I are one just as the Father and I are one" (what does this say to us about the intimacy of God with/in us?); and "whatever you do to the least of these you do to me...whatever you do not do to the least of these you do not do to me" (what does this say about where we encounter God, and what direction we are to go?)
© 2010 halley low